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Brazil: Decree Launches National Pact for Healthy Eating

(Nov. 10, 2015) On November 3, 2015, Brazil published Decree No. 8,353, which creates a National Pact for Healthy Eating (Pacto Nacional para Alimentação Saudável). The purpose of the Pact is to expand the supply, availability, and consumption of healthy foods and to combat overweight, obesity, and disease caused by a poor diet. (Decreto No. […]

Iceland/European Union: Reduction in Import Duties, Increase in Quotas for Agricultural Products

(Oct. 20, 2015) On September 17, 2015, Iceland’s government and the European Union agreed on new terms for agricultural trade. (Press Release, EU and Iceland Strike Deal to Protect Geographical Indications and Enhance Trade for Agricultural and Food Products (Sept. 18, 2015) EUROPA.) Under the new agreement, Iceland will reduce the tariffs on agricultural products […]

Scotland: GM Crops Ban

(Aug. 27, 2015) Public opinion in the United Kingdom in the past has been strongly against the use of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) and genetically modified (GM) crops. (Adam Vaughn, Public Concern over GM Food Has Lessened, Survey Shows, GUARDIAN (Mar. 9, 2012); Martin Robbins, Hulk Smash GM Crops, GUARDIAN (May 30, 2012) (accessed via […]

Japan: New Urban Farming Promotion Basic Act

(June 4, 2015) Japan’s Urban Farming Promotion Basic Act was promulgated on April 22, 2015. (Act No. 14 of 2015 (text of bill), House of Representatives website (in Japanese).) The Act confirms that urban farming is beneficial for the society: to provide a source of fresh and safe products; to give urban residents the opportunity […]

Japan: Three New “Promotion Acts” Under Jurisdiction of Agriculture and Fisheries Ministry

(Sept. 25, 2014) The last three acts of the 2014 regular Diet session, promulgated on June 26, 2014, were “promotion acts” aimed at promoting particular agricultural and fishery industries: pig farming, ornamental plant cultivation, and inland water fisheries. Under each Act, the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, and Fisheries (MAFF) will establish a national basic promotion […]

Japan: Geographical Indication Act Promulgated

(Sept. 24, 2014) Japan’s Geographical Indication (GI) Act was promulgated on June 25, 2014. (Act No. 84, 2014, Tokutei Norin Suisan Butsu to no Meisho no Hogo ni Kansuru Horitsu; text of the legislation, which became law without change, available on the House of Representatives website [in Japanese].) The Act aims to protect producers of […]

France: GMO Prohibition Confirmed

(June 19, 2014) The Conseil d’Etat, France’s highest court for administrative matters, has rejected a request from corn producers to strike down a government regulation prohibiting the sale, use, and growing of a type of genetically modified corn known as MON 810. (Ordonnance du 5 mai 2014, Association générale des producteurs de maïs (AGPM), SARL […]

Denmark: Kosher Slaughter Method Effectively Banned

(June 2, 2014) On February 17, 2014, new animal protection measures entered into force effectively banning kosher slaughter practices in Denmark. Unsedated slaughter has been illegal in Denmark for years, but there has been an exemption for religious slaughter, i.e. kosher and halal practices. That exemption has now been repealed, making kosher slaughter in principle […]

Sri Lanka: Agreement Seeks to Address Climate Change Impact

(Dec. 31, 2013) In December 2013, Sri Lanka and the United Nations World Food Program (WFP) signed an agreement designed to help some Sri Lankan residents in farming communities. The agreement, “Addressing Climate Change Impacts on Marginalized Agricultural Communities Living in the Mahaweli River Basin of Sri Lanka,” aims to help build diversified and resilient […]

Thailand: Crisis in Thai Rice Pledging Scheme

(Aug. 7, 2013) In mid-June 2013, the Thai government admitted that its rice subsidy program had lost 136 billion baht (about US$4.4 billion) in payments to support a rice pledging scheme for the country’s 2011-2012 growing season. (James Hookway, Thai Rice Aid Under Fire, THE WALL STREET JOURNAL (June 17, 2013) [subscription required for access].) […]